We had 23 participants at our meeting on Thursday, which is over half our membership, so well done to those of you who managed to negotiate Zoom. Our fiendish quiz maestros, Victoria and Nichola had been busy and devised a mind bending emoji round based on chocolate plus general knowledge and film trivia. A fun time was had by all. Thanks also to Lesley for hosting and negotiating Zoom
Our May meeting would have been our 6th birthday and AGM. This has been postponed for now and so your current committee of 5 will stay in place until we have further guidance on COVID and social distancing requirements. Once rescheduled we will hold a vote on committee membership and hopefully share a belated birthday cake.
We are doing well with the scrubs (306) and laundry bags (454) production, many thanks to all our volunteers for sharing their time and skills.
If you’re looking for things to do we still have a lot of space on our WI banner for approximately 6 by 6 inch squares, depicting life in and around the area. They can depict anything and be of any medium that can be stitched to the banner.
We are also thinking ahead to our stall at the Christmas fair. As we will not have our regular fund raising cake stall at the Party in the Park this year our Christmas stall will be our main event. This stall sells all sorts of crafts and decorations made by you, our lovely team of WI sisters, so please put your thinking caps on.
Members shared what they have been up to in the past few weeks since our last meeting, including attending remote jazz; attending virtual church; remote schooling; allotment digging; knitting; ice cream making and lots of other creativity. Theresa showed us her beautifully coloured glass rainbows and other glass decorations.
Suzanne is doing a local history project on pubs that have now closed over the years, she has a Facebook page and if you have any information about long lost pubs near you please get in touch with her.
Judith recommended listen to Prof David Speigelhalter on the Andrew Marr show now on BBC IPlayer: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p08csg28
At the next virtual meeting we hope to have Rosina Godwin sharing her adventures in knitting, which will be a demonstration followed by a Q&A session.
Keep well and safe
Angela and the committee
May Book Group
Book group will be held on Zoom next Tuesday 19th May at 8pm. There is still time to read the book if you would like to join in. If you want to join, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send you the number and password for the meeting. The book is The Mary Celeste Papers by Paul Gallimore.
The Mary Celeste Papers is a mystery novel with laugh-out-loud consequences, which bubble up and explode out of the grit and grime of a dead-end railway depot in England. Every character you meet in the book is fully three-dimensional, with the possible exception of Billy who may even have a foot in the sixth dimension.
If you have been following our social media stream you will know that a lot of our members and the wider community have got involved in #fortheloveofscrubs campaign. The NHS is in desperate need of many things as we hearing daily, but they are also in desperate need of scrubs as staff are having to change their scrubs numerous times over the course of day.
We are coordinating a team of over 90 volunteers from our membership and the wider local community to sew scrubs and laundry bags for the NHS in North and East London, going to hospitals, the London Ambulance Service, local GPs and medical practices. What a team effort
Struggling with the new normal….
If you are self-isolating and need some help getting essential supplies, or just to have a chat you can call the local hub co-ordination team on
07394 075 597
And if you would like to volunteer to be part of the team then email
From De Beauvoir Town (Hackney) Community on Facebook
A new food bank has been set up locally if you would like to drop of any donations. It is open Monday to Saturday 12 – 2pm at 23 Englefield Road. Any surplus will be delivered onto the Hackney Food Bank.
Looking for local updates….
the De Beauvoir Association who run Party In The Park every year also publish a regular weekly newsletter with loads of fantastic information about what’s going on around De Beauvoir, virtual programmes for both kids and adults and information about Hackney council and local businesses that are operating in new and innovative ways throughout this crisis.
Sign up here https://www.debeauvoir.org.uk
Solace Women’s Aid Update
As we are not meeting face to face and as all the Solace staff are working from home, it is not possible to continue with our regular collections for them at present.
They have launched a major fundraising campaign #staysafeathome
You may have seen in the news recently that there has been an exponential rise in domestic violence incidents during this crisis. Their campaign aims to raise £150,000 to enable them to do everything they can to ensure their doors stay open throughout this worrying time, to make sure women and children can still receive the support they urgently need.
Their refuges are still open and providing life-changing and life-saving support to women with nowhere else to turn,
Their helpline team and all staff are answering the phones so women have someone to talk to and;
Their community advocacy teams are working tirelessly to make sure, no matter where they are, London is safe for women and their children.
You can donate by clicking the link below, any donation, however small, will help them to continue the amazing work they do to keep women and children safe.
If you have donated already or are planning to donate you might also like to contact Seedlings For Solace that will match your donation with seedlings that you can then plant out in your garden. You can contact Seedlings For Solace on Instagram @seedlingsforsolace
Help needed for refugee and asylum seeking children
We have received a request from the Shpresa Programme who are trying to collect old laptops and tablets so that young asylum seekers and refugees can complete online education set out by their schools and colleges in the Hackney area. Shpresa is a community programme that is trying to provide support to vulnerable families during this crisis through both food support and mobile credit top-ups. However they currently have a particular need for laptops and tablets.
Many young asylum seekers and refugees have been left unable to complete their new online education due to lack of access to technology. This has left them at a disadvantage which puts the future of their education in jeopardy and this donated technology will give them the ability to keep up with their learning.
If you can help get in touch with Esme on her mobile 0777 3350018 or at her email email@example.com.
A lot of our members have been with us since the beginning back in 2014 and will know that every August we decamp to the Scolt’s Head pub for our annual social. Rosie, the manager has always supported us by giving us the back room at no charge, by providing water and arranging snacks, and throughout the year by allowing our posters to be put on their railings. As with all small businesses they are struggling and although we have a policy of not promoting anyone’s business through the WI, Rosie has been so supportive of us throughout the past six years and we wanted to let you know that they are doing frozen meals that can be delivered to you if you live locally. Here’s the link http://the-scolt-head.orderswift.com/